The House of Representatives is chiming in on the controversial ‘new vehicle license plates’ policy by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) just a week after the Senate launched a Blue Ribbon Committee hearing on the matter.

Quezon City Representative and Chairman of the Metro Manila Development Committee Winston Castelo has spoken out and asked the LTO to stop issuing new license plates to motorists and has even suggested that the project be rebidded.

It was discovered during a committee probe that the new plates are being imported directly from the Netherlands, which not only makes it more expensive due to custom duties but it also contributes to the delayed release to motorists.

Priced at Php 450 each for four-wheeled vehicles and Php 120 for tricycles and motorcycles, Rep. Castelo thought it too much for the average daily wage-earning Filipino motorist.

“Ang production pala ng license plates ay ginagawa sa Netherlands. Ini-import pa. We still pay custom duties. Napakamahal ’yung cost at P450 each,” said Castelo.

LTO's new license plate

The delivery of the new license plates that were spread out every five years also became an issue since it will not solve the problem of ‘colorum’ vehicles according to the congressman.

“During the investigation of the committee we found out that the delivery is spread in five years. How can that happen that the intention is to get uniformity of plate numbers if the delivery is spread in five years?” Castelo added.

House Bill 5888 or the ‘License Plate Renewal/Replacement Act’ has now been filed by Rep. Castelo and it states that the LTO is required to issue new car plates only after every 12 years to prevent motorists from paying unnecessary fees.

“Just to stop the practice na every administration may bagong license plate … After 12 years, sturdy pa naman ang license plates. Kung na-chip off, palitan lang natin, but not the entire fleet,” concluded Castelo.